Tokyo Paralympics: The International Paralympic Committee refuses to accept an additional competitor; the Supreme Court rejects shooter Naresh Kumar Sharma’s case

In a stunning turn of events in the case of 5-time Paralympic shooter and Arjuna Award winner Naresh Kumar Sharma, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has announced that an additional Indian competitor will not be allowed to compete in the Tokyo Paralympics.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court ordered the Paralympic Committee (PCI) to recommend his name as an additional competitor in the 50m Paralympics at the Tokyo Paralympics, citing Prima Facie as a reason for his removal. The PCI had also been ordered by the court to report compliance today.

The International Committee, however, pointed out in an email to the PCI that India only earned 10 spots in the qualifying event and hence cannot be offered an additional slot.

Senior Advocate Vikas Singh, standing for Sharma, took note of the IPC’s objection and asked the Delhi High Court’s Division Bench to hear his pending appeal yesterday. Sharma has argued in front of the High Court that replacing him would allow one more participant to be included.

A division bench, consisting of Justices AM Khanwilkar and Sanjiv Khanna, granted Singh’s plea and dismissed the special leave petition, giving him the option of appealing to the High Court. The High Court was also asked to consider the case quickly by the Bench.

The PCI had contended in front of the High Court that it tried to find the best applicants for the game, and Deepak was deemed to have the highest score in the relevant area.

The court was also told that the Serbia Grand Prix was one of the World Shooting Para Sports (WSPS) tournaments in which Sharma had declined to compete.

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